Woolpit, United Kingdom
Woolpit, United Kingdom

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Agency: GTR | Branch: BBSRC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 324.05K | Year: 2016

Nitrogen fertiliser is essential to sustain wheat yields but is also an important determinant of grain quality. This is because nitrogen is required for the synthesis of grain proteins, with the gluten proteins forming the major grain protein fraction. About 40% of the wheat produced in the UK is used for food production, particularly for making bread and other baked products. Wheat is also widely used as a functional ingredient in many processed foods, while bread wheat and imported durum wheats are used to make noodles and pasta, respectively. The gluten proteins are essential for these uses, providing visco-elastic properties to dough. Consequently, the content and quality of the grain proteins affect the processing quality, with a minimum of 13% being specified for the Chorleywood Breadmaking Process (CBP) which is used for over 80% of the factory produced bread in the UK. The requirement of nitrogen to produce wheat for bread making is also above the optimum required for yield, and farmers may apply up to 50 kg N/Ha above the yield optimum to achieve 13% protein (2.28% N). This is costly with nitrogen fertiliser contributing significantly to crop production, and may also contribute to a greater nitrogen footprint in the farmed environment. It may be possible to reduce the requirement for breadmaking wheats, to a limited extent, by optimising the efficiency of nitrogen uptake and use within the wheat plant. However, this will only have limited benefits and a more viable long-term solution is to develop new types of wheat and processing systems which will allow the use of lower protein contents for bread making. We will therefore identify types of wheat which have good and stable breadmaking quality at low grain protein. Genetic analyses of the trait will provide molecular markers to assist wheat breeders while studies of underpinning mechanisms will allow new selection procedures to be used to identify germplasm and select for quality in breeding programmes. We will also work with millers and bakers to establish optimum conditions for processing of wheats with lower protein contents.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: KBBE.2011.1.2-04 | Award Amount: 4.89M | Year: 2012

ADAPTAWHEAT will show how flowering time variation can be exploited for the genetic improvement of the European wheat crop to optimise adaptation and performance in the light of predicted climate change. It will test current hypotheses that postulate specific changes in ear emergence and the timing and duration of developmental phases, which are thought of as components of ear emergence, will improve wheat productivity. Precise genetic stocks varying in specific flowering time elements and subjected to genotyping and characterisation with diagnostic markers for key flowering time genes will be used to test these hypotheses. They will be phenotyped at the molecular (transcript abundance), physiological (growth stage dissection) and agronomic (yield components) levels in multiple field trials located at sites in Europe that represent regional agricultural diversity and at non European locations that have mega environments of relevance. Controlled environment experiments will investigate specific environmental interactions including day length, ambient temperature, and heat stress. Data analysis will aid the construction of new wheat flowering models that can be used to refine existing hypotheses. They will allow standing genetic variation for flowering time in European germplasm to be deployed more efficiently in wheat breeding programmes. This knowledge will be used to inform searches for specific phenotypic and molecular variants in diverse and non adapted wheat germplasm panels provided by consortium members. Vital novel genetic variation will be efficiently imported into the germplasm of European wheat breeders. The project will deliver new diagnostic markers for genotyping, molecular reporters for novel breeding selection strategies and the tools and knowledge necessary for a combined physiology and genomics led predictive wheat breeding programme. A conduit for these outcomes will be three SMEs, who will exploit the tools developed to deliver these outcomes.

Agency: GTR | Branch: BBSRC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 225.97K | Year: 2011

This proposal for LINK funded project will build on a solid base of work currently underway, funded through existing LINK programmes, BBSRC, directly by industry, the Scottish Government and the NIAB Trust fund. The proposed study will seek to initiate a better understanding of wheat root growth, morphology and functional relationships with nutrient and water uptake. Methods to describe roots in a diverse range of winter wheat types will be implemented in controlled glasshouse conditions and in the field. The project will form the foundation for improving nutrient sequestration and conversion in this important UK crop through initiation of pre-breeding and development of ideal root ideotypes suitable for use in current and future wheat production. The consortium will concentrate on efficient or enhanced use of resources, especially nitrogen and phosphate and will consider interactions with water availability. In addition, the importance of interactions with beneficial mycorrhizal fungi on nutrient sequestration and the negative impact of soil-borne pathogenic fungi on susceptible genotypes will be considered under field conditions. Finally, the potential impact of agrochemical seed coats on root performance will be assessed. Overall, research in root biology leading to increases in nutrient uptake efficiency will contribute to reductions in diffuse pollution and will substantially reduce green house gas emission due a reduction in the use of nitrogen fertilisers in wheat cultivation

PubMed | John Innes Center, Bioplante Florimond Desprez, University of Saskatchewan, Saaten Union Biotec GmbH and 9 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: TAG. Theoretical and applied genetics. Theoretische und angewandte Genetik | Year: 2016

SNP markers were developed for the OWBM resistance gene Sm1 that will be useful for MAS. The wheat Sm1 region is collinear with an inverted syntenic interval in B. distachyon. Orange wheat blossom midge (OWBM, Sitodiplosis mosellana Ghin) is an important insect pest of wheat (Triticum aestivum) in many growing regions. Sm1 is the only described OWBM resistance gene and is the foundation of managing OWBM through host genetics. Sm1 was previously mapped to wheat chromosome arm 2BS relative to simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers and the dominant, sequence characterized amplified region (SCAR) marker WM1. The objectives of this research were to saturate the Sm1 region with markers, develop improved markers for marker-assisted selection (MAS), and examine the synteny between wheat, Brachypodium distachyon, and rice (Oryza sativa) in the Sm1 region. The present study mapped Sm1 in four populations relative to single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), SSRs, Diversity Array Technology (DArT) markers, single strand conformation polymorphisms (SSCPs), and the SCAR WM1. Numerous high quality SNP assays were designed that mapped near Sm1. BLAST delineated the syntenic intervals in B. distachyon and rice using gene-based SNPs as query sequences. The Sm1 region in wheat was inverted relative to B. distachyon and rice, which suggests a chromosomal rearrangement within the Triticeae lineage. Seven SNPs were tested on a collection of wheat lines known to carry Sm1 and not to carry Sm1. Sm1-flanking SNPs were identified that were useful for predicting the presence or absence of Sm1 based upon haplotype. These SNPs will be a major improvement for MAS of Sm1 in wheat breeding programs.

Hart D.J.,UK Institute of Food Research | Fairweather-Tait S.J.,University of East Anglia | Broadley M.R.,University of Nottingham | Dickinson S.J.,Premier Foods | And 11 more authors.
Food Chemistry | Year: 2011

The retention and speciation of selenium in flour and bread was determined following experimental applications of selenium fertilisers to a high-yielding UK wheat crop. Flour and bread were produced using standard commercial practices. Total selenium was measured using inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and the profile of selenium species in the flour and bread were determined using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) ICP-MS. The selenium concentration of flour ranged from 30 ng/g in white flour and 35 ng/g in wholemeal flour from untreated plots up to >1800 ng/g in white and >2200 ng/g in wholemeal flour processed from grain treated with selenium (as selenate) at the highest application rate of 100 g/ha. The relationship between the amount of selenium applied to the crop and the amount of selenium in flour and bread was approximately linear, indicating minimal loss of Se during grain processing and bread production. On average, application of selenium at 10 g/ha increased total selenium in white and wholemeal bread by 155 and 185 ng/g, respectively, equivalent to 6.4 and 7.1 μg selenium per average slice of white and wholemeal bread, respectively. Selenomethionine accounted for 65-87% of total extractable selenium species in Se-enriched flour and bread; selenocysteine, Se-methylselenocysteine selenite and selenate were also detected. Controlled agronomic biofortification of wheat crops for flour and bread production could provide an appropriate strategy to increase the intake of bioavailable selenium. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Powell N.M.,CSIRO | Lewis C.M.,John Innes Center | Berry S.T.,Limagrain UK Ltd | MacCormack R.,John Innes Center | Boyd L.A.,UK National Institute of Agricultural Botany
Theoretical and Applied Genetics | Year: 2013

Stripe rust resistance in the winter wheat cultivar Claire had remained effective in the UK and Europe since its release in 1999 and consequently has been used extensively in wheat breeding programs. However, in 2012, reports indicated that this valuable resistance may now have been compromised. To characterise stripe rust resistance in Claire and determine which genes may still confer effective resistance a cross was made between Claire and the stripe rust susceptible cultivar Lemhi. A genetic linkage map, constructed using SSR, AFLP, DArT and NBS-AFLP markers had a total map length of 1,730 cM. To improve the definition of two quantitative trait loci (QTL) identified on the long arm of chromosome 2D further markers were developed from wheat EST. Stripe rust resistance was evaluated on adult plants under field and glasshouse conditions by measuring the extent of fungal growth and sporulation, percentage infection (Pi) and the necrotic/chlorotic responses of the plant to infection, infection type (IT). Four QTL contributing to stripe rust adult plant resistance (APR) were identified in Claire, QYr.niab-2D.1, QYr.niab-2D.2, QYr.niab-2B and QYr.niab-7B. For Pi QYr.niab-2D.1 explained up to 25.4 % of the phenotypic variation, QYr.niab-2D.2 up to 28.7 %, QYr.niab-2B up to 21.7 % and QYr.niab-7B up to 13.0 %. For IT the percentages of phenotypic variation explained were 23.4, 31.8, 17.2 and 12.6 %, respectively. In addition to the four QTL conferring APR in Claire, a race-specific, seedling expressed resistance gene was identified on chromosome 3B. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Jagger L.J.,John Innes Center | Newell C.,Limagrain UK Ltd | Berry S.T.,Limagrain UK Ltd | Maccormack R.,John Innes Center | Boyd L.A.,John Innes Center
Plant Pathology | Year: 2011

The expression of the resistance phenotypes of QPst.jic-2D and QPst.jic-4B, two quantitative trait loci (QTL) for stripe rust resistance in wheat cv. Alcedo, were assessed relative to plant growth stage, while a histopathology analysis was undertaken to characterize the cellular interaction between Puccinia striiformis f.sp.tritici (the causal agent of stripe rust) and each QTL. QPst.jic-2D expressed a partial resistant phenotype at seedling growth stages, with the level of resistance increasing as the wheat plant matured, conferring a disease-free phenotype at heading. QPst.jic-4B, however, did not express a resistant phenotype until booting (growth stage 41 on the Zadoks scale), displaying its full resistant phenotype at heading. Microscopic examination in flag leaves showed that infection sites formed in all genotypes tested, with full infection-site establishment being observed by 36h post-inoculation (hpi). In lines carrying both QPst.jic-2D and QPst.jic-4B, as well as the parental cv. Alcedo, no microcolony formation, defined by the appearance of runner hyphae, was observed. Microcolony formation was observed in lines carrying only one, or neither QTL. Cell death associated with infection sites was observed for all genotypes, although the timing of first appearance and the extent of the cell death response varied considerably. In lines carrying both QPst.jic-2D and QPst.jic-4B cell death did not extend beyond one to three cells. In lines carrying only one QTL more extensive cell death was observed and cell death appeared later in lines with QPst.jic-4B than QPst.jic-2D. Cell death was also occasionally observed in lines without either QTL, although only at 264hpi. © 2011 The Authors. Plant Pathology © 2011 BSPP.

Jagger L.J.,John Innes Center | Newell C.,Limagrain UK Ltd | Berry S.T.,Limagrain UK Ltd | MacCormack R.,John Innes Center | Boyd L.A.,John Innes Center
Theoretical and Applied Genetics | Year: 2011

Stripe rust resistance in the German winter wheat cv. Alcedo has been described as durable, the resistance having remained effective when grown extensively in Germany and Eastern Europe between 1975 and 1989. Genetic characterisation of field resistance in a cross between Alcedo and the stripe rust susceptible UK winter wheat cv. Brigadier identified two major QTL in Alcedo located on the long arms of chromosomes 2D (QPst. jic-2D) and 4B (QPst. jic-4B). Stripe rust resistance was evaluated by measuring the extent of fungal growth, percentage infection (Pi) and the necrotic/chlorotic response of the plant to infection, infection type (IT). Both QPst. jic-2D and QPst. jic-4B contributed significantly to the reduction in stripe rust infection (Pi), with QPst. jic-2D explaining up to 36. 20% and QPst. jic-4B 28. 90% of the phenotypic variation measured for Pi. Both QTL were identified by the IT phenotypic scores, with QPst. jic-2D in particular being associated with a strong necrotic phenotype (low IT), QPst. jic-2D explaining up to 53. 10% of IT phenotypic variation and QPst. jic-4B 22. 30%. In addition, two small effect QTL for field stripe rust resistance were identified in Brigadier, QPst. jic-1B on the long arm of chromosome 1B and QPst. jic-5A on the short arm of chromosome 5A. The influence of QPst. jic-1B was primarily seen with the Pi phenotype, contributing up to 13. 10% of the explained phenotypic variation. QPst. jic-5A was only detected using an approximate multiple-QTL model and selecting markers linked to the major effect QTL, QPst. jic-2D and QPst. jic-4B as co-factors. Seedling stripe rust resistance was also mapped in the cross, which confirmed the location of Yr17 from Brigadier to the short arm of chromosome 2A. A seedling expressed QTL was also located in Alcedo that mapped to the same location as the field stripe rust resistance QPst. jic-2D. © 2010 Springer-Verlag.

Berry P.M.,ADAS High Mowthorpe | Berry S.T.,Limagrain UK Ltd
Euphytica | Year: 2015

A genetic analysis of plant characters associated with lodging resistance, yield and other agronomic traits was made on two doubled haploid winter wheat populations grown at two UK locations in the 2004/2005, 2005/2006 and 2006/2007 seasons. Wide genetic variation was found for traits that affect lodging, including plant height, components of stem strength (stem diameter, wall width and material strength), components of anchorage strength (spread and depth of the root plate), ear area and shoot number per plant. Heritabilities were estimated for each of the key lodging traits, with plant height having the highest heritability and anchorage traits the lowest values. Six quantitative trait loci (QTL) controlling plant height had individual height effects (2 × the additive effect) of 3–9 cm and taken together, could potentially increase plant height by up to 34 cm. Three of the height QTL were also associated with greater yield or greater thousand grain weight, and three were associated with components of stem strength or anchorage strength. QTL were also identified for each of the measured lodging traits, which were unrelated to height. Individual QTL with the largest estimated effects on lodging resistance were for height, stem diameter, stem material strength, stem failure moment, root plate spread and root plate depth. Diagnostic genetic markers for the most important QTL regions are now required to enable breeders to efficiently combine multiple traits together in a single variety that will increase lodging resistance and yield simultaneously. © 2015, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.

Agency: GTR | Branch: Innovate UK | Program: | Phase: Collaborative Research & Development | Award Amount: 247.73K | Year: 2011

The project aims to develop a methodology to identify sequence-based markers that are predictive of crop performance and that can be used to make crop breeding faster and more efficient. To underpin marker-assisted breeding and realize this potential in hybrid rape, molecular markers predictive of hybrid performance are required. High throughput sequencing will be used to simultaneously identify variation in gene sequences and quantify gene expression in the parents of a panel of ~150 hybrids for which performance is known or will be determined in the initial phase of the project. Using a combination of 3 approaches, correlations between sequence-based variation and performance for a range of traits will be identified. Hybrids with new combinations of markers predicted to give enhanced performance will be developed and the performance validated by on-farm trialling. Rapeseed has food, feed and industrial applications, so has enormous market potential as food security and mitigation of climate change are coming to the fore. Hybrid cultivars (i.e. those derived by crossing two inbred parent lines) provide opportunities for boosting income streams along the supply chain. However, the lack of progress in the development of hybrids using conventional breeding approaches makes this an ideal subject for evaluating the applicability of new sequence-based approaches.

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